To ensure Ukrainians fleeing violence who are arriving in B.C. have access to the services they need, and to co-ordinate the generosity of British Columbians, the Province is updating supports.
The Service BC phone line, 1 800 663-7867, will be available with translation services in Ukrainian, Russian and 140 other languages and will be available from 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. (Pacific time) every day.
It will serve two main purposes:
- to help people arriving from Ukraine and their families in locating and accessing the services they need, such as employment, health care, housing and education; and
- to co-ordinate British Columbians who want to volunteer or donate to help displaced Ukrainians feel welcome in British Columbia.
Ukrainian community organizations in major urban centres and regional hubs have indicated they are overwhelmed by the generosity of British Columbians and need help managing calls and offers of support. This phone number will help assist with these pressures.
Most Ukrainians coming to B.C. are expected to arrive through the Canada-Ukraine Authorization for Emergency Travel program. Under this new federal program, Ukrainians and their family members will be allowed to stay in Canada as temporary residents for up to three years. Ukrainians will be allowed to apply for a three-year open work permit.
The Province is co-ordinating a cross-government response to ensure Ukrainians have access to supports and programs they need. Additional supports will come online in the weeks ahead.